NBC issues apology on Zimmerman tape screw-up
By Erik Wemple
April 3, 2012
NBC has completed its investigation into the mishandling of the police dispatcher’s conversation with George Zimmerman in the Trayvon Martin case. And the process ends with a finding of error, plus an apology. Here is the statement just issued by the network:
During our investigation it became evident that there was an error made in the production process that we deeply regret. We will be taking the necessary steps to prevent this from happening in the future and apologize to our viewers.
That apology addresses the “Today” show’s failure to abridge accurately the conversation between Zimmerman and the dispatcher in this high-profile case. This is how the program portrayed a segment of that conversation:
Zimmerman: This guy looks like he’s up to no good. He looks black.
And here is how it actually went down:
Zimmerman: This guy looks like he’s up to no good. Or he’s on drugs or something. It’s raining and he’s just walking around, looking about.
Dispatcher: OK, and this guy — is he black, white or Hispanic?
Zimmerman: He looks black.
No matter how you feel about Zimmerman, that bit of tape editing was unfair to the truth and to Zimmerman’s reputation, such as it is. Reaction on Twitter and elsewhere to my previous post on this matter, was brutal toward NBC, with many comments suggesting the worst about the network’s motivations, reliability and so on.
(Partisan Ranger Note: Hmmmmm, it’s almost as if the press wants tension, racial divide, and violence. Hmmmmmm…..)